You have to hand it to him: ever since Colby Covington kicked the “bad guy” persona into overdrive, he’s talked his way into a UFC interim title fight (which he won), and managed to get some face-time with President Trump.

Of course, Covington remains that guy who could perish in a freak meteor strike accident and no one would shed a tear, but whatevs. At least he’s got that interim belt… oh wait.

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Anyway, Kamaru Usman won TUF 21, and has maintained a flawless Octagon record subsequent to that, but the dude hasn’t really gotten much traction with fans. So his modus operandi has been to ride on that Covington Hate Train and hope it gets him somewhere. Who knows, maybe it might. Usman has made no secret that he keeps pushing for a fight against Covington and it has yet to materialize. If they do meet, and Usman beats him, would some of that Covington shine rub off?

Here’s MMAFighting:

“If they had have offered me Covington on Nov. 30th, I would’ve said, ‘Absolutely’. That’s the one guy that I really have malicious intent to hurt inside that cage. Of course, they did offer me that and I did jump on that, but then [Covington] went to the White House and came back and was like, ‘I don’t want that fight’.”

As far as Usman is concerned, Covington’s unwillingness to take a fight could come back to haunt him if Woodley and Till are sidelined after their meeting on Sept. 8.

“[Covington] talked for a long time about how he wanted a title fight. But then they give him a title fight — Sept. 8 that’s your event — but he comes out and says he’s not ready. You’re not the champ, you’re the interim guy. You’re just a placeholder. The champ is ready to go. He gave you an opportunity and you turned it down, so they went with the next guy, they went with Darren Till.

“Now you have to sit and wait. God forbid, if something happens to the guys that have to fight on Sept. 8 and they have to be out for a while. What does that mean? You’re not going to fight forever until they’re ready? You said you’d be ready in November, [the UFC] offered me the fight in November. I accepted and he says no — once again for the fourth time.”